Genetics and alcohol consumption
Specialists from the Research Institute of Medical Genetics, Russian Academy of Medical Sciences (Tomsk), have found that some variants of the genes responsible for ethanol metabolism impact on blood pressure and lipidic exchange, and raise the risk of coronary atherosclerosis in studies of the Russian population of Western Siberia. However, this does not mean that genes’ influence on the cardiovascular system is directly connected with ethanol metabolism.
For years, physicians have assumed that alcohol abuse leads to cardiovascular diseases. However, other data has also appeared recently, in which moderate doses of alcohol resist initiation of these diseases, particularly coronary heart disease. On the one hand, ethanol increases arterial pressure, concentrating fatty acids and urea in the blood. On the other hand, ethanol decreases cholesterol and encourages blood protein coagulation and thrombi formation.
The action of alcohol ingested largely depends on its concentration in the blood. About 90 percent of ethanol is decomposed in the liver, with several enzymes participating in the process: alcohol dehydrogenases, acetaldehyde dehydrogenases, 2'1-class '450 cytochromes and some others. Diversity in the sequences of these enzymes’ genes, or their genetic polymorphism impacts the ethanol disintegration rate and the diseases connected with its abuse, as well as predisposition to cardiovascular diseases. For example, certain mutations in the alcohol dehydrogenase genes with Japanese men allow to oxidize ethanol 100 to 200 times quicker. Therefore, polymorphism of the genes participating in ethanol disintegration should tell upon the cardiovascular system state.
The Tomsk geneticists examined a group of patients with a diagnosis of ischemic cardiac disease and coronary atherosclerosis. The reference group consisted of practically healthy inhabitants of Tomsk. All participants to the experiment were examined from the point of view of cardiovascular system state and polymorphism of several genes: two genes of alcohol dehydrogenase (ADH1B and ADH7) and 'YP2'1 cytochrome gene.
The researchers found mutant variants of these genes, which influence blood pressure, fatty acids and lipoproteins concentration. The same genes determine the ethanol disintegration rate. The researchers assume that the genes’ influence on lipidic exchange and blood pressure is unconnected with the ethanol disintegration function. It is probable that the enzymes, whose operation is determined by these genes, perform several functions. However, these genes can probably be used as markers of alcoholic dependence.
Nadezda Markina | alfa
The most recent press releases about innovation >>>
Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:
An international team of scientists has proposed a new multi-disciplinary approach in which an array of new technologies will allow us to map biodiversity and the risks that wildlife is facing at the scale of whole landscapes. The findings are published in Nature Ecology and Evolution. This international research is led by the Kunming Institute of Zoology from China, University of East Anglia, University of Leicester and the Leibniz Institute for Zoo and Wildlife Research.
Using a combination of satellite and ground data, the team proposes that it is now possible to map biodiversity with an accuracy that has not been previously...
Heatwaves in the Arctic, longer periods of vegetation in Europe, severe floods in West Africa – starting in 2021, scientists want to explore the emissions of the greenhouse gas methane with the German-French satellite MERLIN. This is made possible by a new robust laser system of the Fraunhofer Institute for Laser Technology ILT in Aachen, which achieves unprecedented measurement accuracy.
Methane is primarily the result of the decomposition of organic matter. The gas has a 25 times greater warming potential than carbon dioxide, but is not as...
Hydrogen is regarded as the energy source of the future: It is produced with solar power and can be used to generate heat and electricity in fuel cells. Empa researchers have now succeeded in decoding the movement of hydrogen ions in crystals – a key step towards more efficient energy conversion in the hydrogen industry of tomorrow.
As charge carriers, electrons and ions play the leading role in electrochemical energy storage devices and converters such as batteries and fuel cells. Proton...
Scientists from the Excellence Cluster Universe at the Ludwig-Maximilians-Universität Munich have establised "Cosmowebportal", a unique data centre for cosmological simulations located at the Leibniz Supercomputing Centre (LRZ) of the Bavarian Academy of Sciences. The complete results of a series of large hydrodynamical cosmological simulations are available, with data volumes typically exceeding several hundred terabytes. Scientists worldwide can interactively explore these complex simulations via a web interface and directly access the results.
With current telescopes, scientists can observe our Universe’s galaxies and galaxy clusters and their distribution along an invisible cosmic web. From the...
Temperature measurements possible even on the smallest scale / Molecular ruby for use in material sciences, biology, and medicine
Chemists at Johannes Gutenberg University Mainz (JGU) in cooperation with researchers of the German Federal Institute for Materials Research and Testing (BAM)...